As some of you know, we have a (nearly) 20 year old African Grey Parrot named Eddy. Eddy came into our home about two years ago when my parents decided that they didn’t want him anymore. My parents had bought him at a pet shop where his first owner returned him after only a year (apparently he couldn’t take Eddy’s attitude – he’s not a cuddly bird).
He had been in the family for 18 years and for many of those years, we had shared rooms. I was frantic when they told me that they were thinking about putting him in the paper. I couldn’t imagine him with anyone else. Would he be treated right? Would he be scared? Would he wonder where we were at all the time? Would he get his favorite toys and snacks? Would those people tire of him and sell him off? There are so many different things that could go wrong with a rehomed bird that my husband and I decided to take him in. (Did I mention that my hubby is all kinds of win? He is.)
At around this time, we were looking for a new apartment. I knew that I wanted a few things:
- central air conditioning (we had a window unit at the old place and it was either really cold or really hot, depending on whether you were standing in the air stream) – Birds can’t handle drafts so we definitely wanted a controlled environment.
- pets allowed (the old place didn’t allow any pets outside of a small aquarium and they didn’t even allow visits from friends/family with pets)
Luckily we found the perfect place and moved all of our stuff in. Then came the bird. Then came a bigger house for the bird (his old cage was tiny in comparison). Then came the joy of watching him get used to his surroundings and gain confidence from all of his freedom (he wasn’t ever let out at my parents’, but he’s hardly inside his cage here). He climbed, swung and generally hung out all day.
Then came this:
Carpet pulling. The red arrow = Yul Brenner. The blue arrow = crime evidence.
And he’s a multiple offender. *sighs* He likes to climb down from his cage and onto the carpet where he commences to yank, tug and chew each strand of nice, plush carpet out of its place.
Did I mention that we rent?
Caught him in the act today and it was JAIL time.
Don’t be fooled by the “I would NEVER chew the carpet!” look he’s giving the camera. That tear? HA! Crocodile tears, I tell ya.
(I just love to use Picnik)
He stayed inside his cage for only 10 minutes, and he’s back out now. The one thing you’ve got to understand as a parrot owner is that your fid (feathered kid) is like a two year old with a can opener. They can’t be taught right or wrong, although they do seem to understand when you’re upset. This doesn’t mean that they’ll stop what they’re doing, however. Will he climb back down and tear up the carpet again? Probably. Will I have to use Elmer’s glue to put it all to rights? Definitely.
And you know what? In some strange way, that’s why I love him.